Rocky Mountain Instinct C50/70 and Norco Optic C2

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Rocky Mountain Instinct C50/70 and Norco Optic C2
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Posted: Mar 25, 2020 at 23:03 Quote
Now that the 2020 Optic has been released (and won PinkBike Bike of the Year) - how would people compare the Optic C2 and the Instinct C50/70? BC or non-BC edition - but non-BC is the one I've been looking at the most. Looking for ride impressions from people who've ridden both. Which is more supple off the top? Bigger hits? Better at rock gardens? Better climber? Descender?

For reference, I'm 6ft, 165lbs. Not an aggressive rider, no big jumps or drops. Mostly enjoy climbing up to get down stuff and then some longer days in the saddle. I've been enjoying steep(ish?) technical riding on BC North Shore, Squamish and Interior BC (Vernon, Kelowna) and also some flow trails

Posted: Mar 26, 2020 at 9:24 Quote
JonoSchwarz wrote:
Now that the 2020 Optic has been released (and won PinkBike Bike of the Year) - how would people compare the Optic C2 and the Instinct C50/70? BC or non-BC edition - but non-BC is the one I've been looking at the most. Looking for ride impressions from people who've ridden both. Which is more supple off the top? Bigger hits? Better at rock gardens? Better climber? Descender?

For reference, I'm 6ft, 165lbs. Not an aggressive rider, no big jumps or drops. Mostly enjoy climbing up to get down stuff and then some longer days in the saddle. I've been enjoying steep(ish?) technical riding on BC North Shore, Squamish and Interior BC (Vernon, Kelowna) and also some flow trails

My shop sells both, but sadly I haven't had a chance to test the Optic. However I can tell you that the Instinct is a safe choice regardless. To me, the 29-inch wheels took care of all the off-the-top suppleness over chatter, since I'm used to 27.5s. I felt very stable charging through rock gardens. The fact that it's 140mm on both ends will make it better at bigger hits than the Optic, and it has the 9-way configurable geometry adjustment system so you can experiment. Climbing efficiency with the Instinct is excellent. I felt no need to use the climb switch on local trails. Fire roads and prolonged ups may be a slightly different story, but it pedals just fine, seated and standing.

Size wise, you could get either a large for more maneuverability or an XL for more stability. The standover is the same. Try both in a parking lot if possible.

I ride same as you–not aggressive but I like my bike to both climb and hit hard because big suspension is fun and saves my butt sometimes. I own a Canfield Balance (160mm enduro brawler) and felt no less confident on the Instinct.

The BC Edition is obviously harder-hitting, and because the rear is bumped to 155mm it will lose a little in the climbing department, but if you like the extra smash-and-ram factor then the BC Edition is still a majorly fun bike.

The Optic will be tad more stable at speeds, and pedaling efficiency will be very similar, but it'll be a little less supple and forgiving in the rear, since it is designed to be a very poppy bike with 125mm rear travel. It's a fun formula for sure, if your riding style calls for more flicking and skipping. The large Optic is nearly the same wheelbase as the XL Instinct, so keep that in mind.

Best all-rounder: Instinct
Best hard-hitter: Instinct BC
Best hop, jump, skip & prance: Optic


 
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